ALLSTAR: Limaland: Ohio Speedweek race report 2002-07-05

ALLENTOWN, OH - Dale Blaney made it six different winners in six Speedweek shows Friday night at Limaland Motorsports Park in the Arizona Sport Shirts All Star sprint Ohio Speedweek 30-lap feature. It was round six of the seven race series and...

ALLENTOWN, OH - Dale Blaney made it six different winners in six Speedweek shows Friday night at Limaland Motorsports Park in the Arizona Sport Shirts All Star sprint Ohio Speedweek 30-lap feature. It was round six of the seven race series and paid Blaney $6,000 for his first win of the season aboard the Fritz Andrews' No. 72 Maxim-Fisher on Hoosier Tires.

"This means an awful lot to us. It's the first All Star win for Fritz Andrews. He's given me a great car to run all this week," Blaney related. "We've been close a couple of times and to get this win here is pretty neat. I just tried to run as hard as I could for 30 laps."

Jeff Shepard was on the pole at the start, with Chad Kemenah outside and Blaney and Mark Keegan in row two. Shepard grabbed the initial lead over Kemenah and Blaney before a lap two red for a Jack Hewitt flip in turn four. When the green came back out, Shepard took off with Kemenah and Blaney trailing.

Ninth starter Greg Wilson was now on the move, and was up to fifth by the time Rodney Duncan spun on lap seven. Blaney dove under Kemenah for second following that restart and began heavily pressuring Shepard. Shepard rode the high groove of the quarter mile, with Blaney running the low groove. Each lap Blaney dove low in the turns to try a slide job, but each lap came up just inches short of the lead. This frantic action continued for three laps until Todd Kane spun on lap 11 just as Blaney nosed ahead of Shepard, but the pass was nullified by the yellow. Shepard pulled away from Blaney after the restart, but he was running the rough upper groove and jumped the cushion several times, allowing Blaney to close. A lap 14 bobble was Shepard's undoing, as Blaney dove under Shepard after the leader's bobble to take the lead at the halfway point. Shepard was now second with Wilson up to third. Lapped traffic saw Wilson move around Shepard for second as Blaney still led. At the two-thirds mark Blaney moved to the high groove and began stretching his lead.

At the end, Blaney had a half-straightaway margin over runnerup Wilson. Fifth starting Dean Jacobs just edged Shepard at the start-finish line on the last lap to secure third, with Shepard fading to fourth ahead of Kemenah. Sixth was Paul McMahan after starting eighth, followed by Byron Reed, up from 11th, fast timer Rob Chaney, Phil Gressman up from 12th and Butch Schroeder was tenth.

"Dale's been fast all week long," Wilson said after finishing second. "It's great to be standing on the frontstretch. If you keep standing on the frontstretch you'll start winning more races," the pilot of Bob Hampshire's Maxim concluded.

"We've had a pretty rough week so far," Jacobs said of his third place run. "To come here and get a third place is really good. It's fun to come to these racetracks where you can race the car hard. They're made to race hard and when you race them hard it's a whole lot more fun."

The Crown Battery heat fell to Wilson, the B&B Products heat went to Todd Kane, the Engler Machine and Tool heat was won by Kenny Jacobs and the TP Wings heat fell to Joe Gaerte. Butch Schroeder won the United Aluminum Window Sales & Consulting B Main while Blaney captured the Haulmark Dash.

-www.allstarsprint.com-

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About this article
Series Sprint
Drivers Jack Hewitt , Kenny Jacobs , Dean Jacobs , Paul McMahan , Greg Wil , Chad Kemenah